“Killers of the Flower Moon” 2023 – A Masterpiece Wrapped in a Slightly Too-Long Bow

Di Caprio. Di Niro. Gladstone. IMDB. Killers of the Flower Moon. A Martin Scorsese Picture. 2023. Fair Use

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Picture this: A gripping murder mystery that goes on and on like a piece of bubblegum you just can’t stop chewing. “Killers of the Flower Moon” is a testament to Martin Scorsese‘s cinematic vision, but oh boy, it’s like he decided to make a film as long as the Osage murders themselves.

Adaption from Book to Screen

“Killers of the Flower Moon” by David Grann is a nonfiction book that was adapted into a film by Martin Scorsese. The book explores the harrowing Osage Indian murders, uncovering a history of greed, conspiracy, and the birth of the FBI. Grann’s storytelling and meticulous research provide a profound understanding of the Osage Nation’s suffering and resilience. Time magazine recognized it as one of the top nonfiction books of 2017. The film adaptation brings this powerful story to the screen, offering a visual representation of the injustices inflicted on the Osage people and their fight for justice. Together, the book and film ensure that this dark chapter in American history continues to captivate and educate audiences.

Gangsters and Cowboys, a Scorsese Classic

Here, Scorsese takes a detour from his usual mobster tales to uncover the sinister gangsterism America tried to sweep under the rug. Set in the late 1800s and early 1900s, it’s a dark and dirty journey into the organised chaos of greed, blood, and mayhem.

Oil, Wealth, and Murder

Oil is discovered on Osage land, making them the richest folks on Earth. But, alas, where there’s wealth, there are wolves in sheep’s clothing. Dozens of Osage are murdered during this Reign of Terror, and the story zeroes in on Leonardo DiCaprio‘s Ernest Burkhart. He’s here to marry into Osage wealth, and let’s just say, things get messy.

A Powerful Vision with a Touch of ‘Too Long’

Scorsese paints this Western with his classic dark palette, exploring the core of human evil, power’s corrupting influence, and the myths and truths of the cowboy legend. It’s a haunting portrayal that lingers.

Love Amidst Chaos

Though the weight of DiCaprio and De Niro‘s performances can’t be denied, the real star here is Lily Gladstone, who plays Mollie Burkhart. Her character’s love story with Ernest is as beautiful as it is complicated, making you question trust, loyalty, and redemption.

De Niro, Di Caprio. IMDB. Killers of the Flower Moon. 2023. Fair Use
Lily Gladstone. IMDB. Killers of the Flower Moon. 2023. Fair Use

Walk a Mile in Osage Shoes

The film is told through the Osage Nation’s perspective, an authentic touch thanks to Osage consultants, actors, and craftsmen. It begins and ends with their rituals, a stark reminder to anyone who’d try to extinguish them.

A Western Thriller with Osage Heart

It’s the 1920s, and America’s darkest secret is on display. “Killers of the Flower Moon” unfolds with the brashness of a classic Western, maintaining a relentless pace. Yet, it doesn’t shy away from the harsh truth of Native American genocide.

Get Ready for a Rollercoaster

What keeps you in your seat throughout this epic ride is the captivating love story between Mollie and Ernest, wrapped in an enigmatic veil of doubt. It’s a whirlwind of emotions.

A Note on the Length

Now, here’s the catch. It’s an endless journey, clocking in at over three hours. Scorsese, we love you, but couldn’t this masterpiece have had a trim? This film doesn’t just chew bubblegum; it blows the biggest bubble, and we’re left waiting for the pop.

Action Reloaded’s Verdict

In the end, “Killers of the Flower Moon” is a powerful odyssey through a dark chapter of American history. It might be a touch too lengthy, but that’s a minor hiccup in an otherwise astonishing storytelling experience. Grab your popcorn, but be ready for a marathon – this film doesn’t know when to quit.

★★★★☆ Action Reloaded

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Buy David Grann’s book: Killers of the Flower Moon: The Osage Murders and the Birth of the FBI